Sunday, November 4, 2007

Turning outside things in...

It’s funny how external things always affect you internally.

WARNING, the following contains a whole diatribe that pertains to Nike+ and the 1999 movie Fight Club staring Brad Pitt, Edward Norton and Helena Bonham Carter, if you do not know or have no desire to know what either is you can skip the next two paragraphs.

I am in, well was – I just won it, a Nike+ challenge with kangator, the premise, a product of the warped mind of PMag; the challenge host, is along the lines of Fight Club, that is, you challenge another member and you fight or in our case you run, or well, you don’t but then you will typically loose, anyway I digress. Kangator had previously challenged me but I was allowed to tap out; stomach flu was raging; Fight Club Rule #4, of course I have actually broken rules #1 and 2 by just writing this, confused, just rent the movie and all will be revealed. Anyway I digress, so I re-challenged kangator, to "The Heinz-man Trophy"; the first to run 57 miles, this was a crude and, I thought, obvious play on Heisman Trophy and Heinz’, as in beans and soup, 57 varieties. Kangator proved to be a worthy competitor, he laid down over 26 miles in the first two days, I responded with 25 followed by an additional 13 by day four, at this point my eldest son, who is three years old decided that my iPod USB cable seemed of particular interest to him and made off with it and then conveniently forget where he had hidden it, this meant that I was unable to sync my iPod with the Nike+ site, a tad frustrating as by day six kangator had notched up 46 miles and was within sight of the 57 miles finish line. Day seven was a rest day for us both and it was looking like it was going to be a sprint finish on long run Sunday.

The arrival of our second son two weeks ago has had an accumulative affect on the amount of sleep I am getting; read "not a lot" and I find my energy levels are generally pretty low. The lack of sleep was taking its toll; I was tired; by the end of the challenge I would have run 150% (59 miles) the number of hours sleep (40 or so) I had got in the same amount of time. The tiredness was evident in my forth run, on Thursday; my hamstrings were tight and I felt lethargic in the closing miles, however Thursday’s upside was while looking for my son’s bedtime story book de’ jour I found my iPod cable, good news. Now to get around to the first sentence of this post, to recap I was tired, did I say that already? And I needed to run 8 miles before Sunday east coast time, we, as a family got home from a day out at the Santa Barbara Zoo around 8pm and we, my wife and I, went through the all signing all dancing performance of getting our eldest in bed, fortunately he was tired so resistance was minimal. I was not really looking forward to running late, Santa Barbara had been shrouded in fog and was cold, remember cold is relative in Southern California, the thermometer in my car said 56F, however by the time we had got home the good news was that the temperature had increased to 71F, much better and more good news. A quick check on my email; Hi, my name is SLB and I am an email addict, revealed that a project lead that I thought had gone stone cold was actually blazing away! More good news, not wanting to waste this run of good luck and the uplift in my emotional barometer and of course not to be outrun by kangator and bettered by the three hour timezone difference, kangator is in NJ, I laced up my shoes and headed out the door to run off the remaining 8 miles needed for victory. I set of on my usual route which allows me to run on autopilot and has me at mile 2.5 before you can say “crap, I forgot to start my ForerunnerI pushed on feeling, well actually pretty good, my glutes had been feeling tight over the last week but tonight everything was aligned, (well not the stars, according to my lottery ticket; maybe next week), and I was happily cranking out 8:45 or so miles and everything felt great, I reached the turnaround point at mile 5 and headed back home, I walked back up the hill, as is my modus operandi to the house and synced my iPod, the rest, as they say, is history. So the moral of the story is to make hay while the sun shines…that is don’t ignore the signs, if they’re telling you to go, then go!

On another Nike+ note the much awaited Q2K7 Quadrathlon hats and visors arrived from HeadSweats, they look great and they will, as anyone who has worn a HeadSweat product, I expect perform flawlessly. October’s Quadrathlon drew to a close, the winners will be announced soon once all the miles and points have been tallied.

OK that’s enough Nike+ tale telling. Time for a quick summary of last month.

My total mileage was 106 miles, some 37 or so miles less than the month before, however when you take into account that I had the stomach flu for 9 days and then we were dissuaded from running due poor air quality; a result of the many wildfires that really only left me 22 days for running, if you work out the month on that number of days and pro rate it for the month that would actually have been 149 miles which is more in the ball park that I need to be, although this will be increasing as my training plan will obviously increase my mileage over the coming months it still maintains my base.

Looking forward, I am still undecided about the 30k or 50k on the 18th, the consensus so far is to go for it, thanks to everyone who answered, there is, unfortunately no prize. I will make a decision by the end of the weekend/early next week. My participation in Iron Wil’s Through the3 Wall Challenge has been all over the place, we’re about to start week 5 and I have made some progress, the stomach flu forced my to unwillingly drop 6lbs, but despite my best efforts my actual weight has changed very little and my body fat has only moved around 1%. I did manage to find the bargain of the year in the multi-gym market, a bench complete with options for a lat fly and quad curl and 80lbs worth of weights for less than $100, this will help me maintain the work put in at Blake PT on my quads and hamstrings; essential if I am really going to stick to the trail side of things.

So I start another month, a third of the way through the final quarter of 2007, with lots of targets; most of them moving, as is often the case, hopefully I can hit some of them before the year closes out?

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